Natural Gas Fireplaces - Product Overview
so many styles of natural gas fireplaces and venting options available,
there are almost no limits to where you can install one. You can create
a warm ambiance or a bold statement with a natural gas fireplace
almost anywhere in your home. Think about adding one to your kitchen
renovation, the master bedroom or the family recreation room in the
Natural gas fireplaces have a wide variety of design styles, venting options and
installation possibilities available.
There are three basic types of natural gas
Natural gas inserts:
gas inserts fit into existing masonry fireplaces and they are vented
through the existing chimney.
There are a variety
of efficient heaters feature fans and thermostat controls.
With many designs and
styles of gas inserts available there is one to suit your décor and
existing fireplace mantel or surround perfectly
Free standing natural gas fireplaces:
name of this attractive and popular natural gas fireplace unit says
it all – it is free standing; not surrounded by a hearth or built
into a wall.
Free standing natural
gas fireplaces can look similar to a traditional wood stove.
Venting for a
freestanding unit is flexible, you can choose to vent it through an
existing chimney or through a roof or a wall.
With such flexibility
of venting, freestanding units can be installed almost anywhere in
your home and are particularly popular for heating additions and
basement living areas
With the top and side
surfaces exposed, free standing units are more effective at supplying heat to
Zero-clearance natural gas fireplace:
name of this fireplace describes
its main attributes clearly; they can be installed with zero-clearance
to wall elements. This means no space is required between the unit
and building materials such as wood or wall boards.
Direct venting is
often used for zero-clearance natural gas fireplaces (see Direct Venting
below for details).
Venting 101 – A primer on removing combustion gases
from your natural gas fireplace to the outdoors
Good news. There is a wide variety of venting
options for natural gas fireplaces. This means you have freedom to
choose exactly what type of fireplace you want (see above) and putting
it almost anywhere without worrying about linking
up to an existing chimney.
This venting style takes advantage of the fact that hot air rises up a
vertical chimney. These units have a draft hood* that requires extra air
from your home to isolate the burner from outside pressure fluctuations
caused by wind effects. Natural draft fireplaces typically use
B-vent** or, in an existing chimney, an approved metal liner that includes
a B-vent or flexible metal liner.
* Draft Hood/Draft Diverter:
A mechanism built into an appliance or made a part of the flue or
vent connector from an appliance, which is designed to reduce wind
effects and prevent back draft.
A type of metal vent that draws combustion air from inside the home and
vents combustion exhaust to the outdoors.
This venting style takes outdoor air in through one pipe to the firebox
while combustion gases are taken outside through another. The venting
pipes can be straight through an outside wall or they may extend for a
limited distance horizontally or vertically through the house. Unlike
natural draft venting no air from your home is used for combustion which
makes this venting option more energy efficient.
Power venting uses an electrical fan to remove combustion gases from the
fireplace. This provide a variety of venting options - horizontally,
vertically or a combination of both. Because power venting controls the
venting process less heated air is used compared to chimney venting.
More natural gas features and options
Electronic ignition or continuous pilot light
A pilot light ignites the main burner of a natural gas fireplace. One
option is to have a continuous or standing pilot. The
other option is to have an intermittent pilot that is turned off and on
by a thermostat or homeowner control. The benefit of choosing
a continuous pilot light is that your fireplace will function and warm
your home even if there is a power outage. Intermittent pilot ignition
systems can also operate without grid power if they are equipped with a
Variable-setting controls and thermostats
A variable-setting control gives you the freedom to adjust how much heat
comes out of your fireplace. This feature, also known as ‘turndown’
enables you to maintain a comfortable temperature in your room while
still enjoying the look of glowing embers and flickering flames. A benefit
of a variable-setting control is more comfort for you and your family.
An automatic thermostat control keeps the room
temperature at a constant level by controlling how much or little heat
comes from your fireplace.
Most natural gas fireplaces have a ‘heat exchanger’ that circulates heat by
convection. Some models also have a circulating air fan to increase the
amount of convective heat supplied by the fireplace. There are also
variable-speed fireplace fans which allow control of air flow from the